A century from Misbah-ul-Haq guided Pakistan to 282-4 on day one of the second Test against England in Dubai on Thursday.
It was a familiar sight for Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium, as a resolute batting display saw them go into day two the happier of the two sides.
The hosts frustrated the English in the first match in Abu Dhabi, before a thrilling final day almost saw England steal the most unlikeliest of victories. Pakistan won the toss again and chose to bat again in the second contest. While their 523-8 from the first encounter seems a long shot from here, they will be content with their work, mainly thanks to the exploits of their 41-year-old skipper.
They started brightly in similarly sweltering conditions to that of Abu Dhabi, as a 50-run stand between Mohammad Hafeez and Shan Masood suggested that the English were in for another long day in the field. Moeen Ali would find the breakthrough, however, to remove Hafeez for 19.
That prompted a couple of quick wickets. Ben Stokes, a doubt for this match due to illness, showed no signs of discomfort, seeing off Shoaib Malik for two – his 245 from the first Test seeming a long way away with two runs from his next two innings. Jimmy Anderson then saw off Masood for a well-played 54.
Younis Khan and Misbah then led the Pakistan recovery in comfortable fashion. Both players notched up 50 as they produced a 93-run stand. Mark Wood, arguably the most impressive bowler on the day, was the man to see off Younis for 56.
What then followed was a masterclass from Misbah. Wood’s short bowling proved a stern test for him as he was hit on the helmet, but it was an otherwise near-flawless display from him, as he notched up a century, equalling Inzamam ul-Haq’s seven Test centuries as captain.
He navigated the final session with Asad Shafiq, as the pair passed a century stand, leaving them in a healthy position going into Friday’s action.
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